Welcome to March 2012

March 1, 2012 12:17 AM

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Overnight highlights. Following are highlights of overnight trade:

Corn: 1 to 4 cents lower. Futures were slightly lower overnight amid light profit-taking following five straight days of price gains. This morning's USDA Weekly Export Sales Report will help direct early price action, with the turn of the calendar meaning traders will be reestablishing positions. March corn futures ended February 17 1/2 cents higher than the last trading day of January, while the December contract finished 1 cent lower.

Soybeans: 2 to 4 cents lower. Futures saw light profit-taking after yesterday's strong gains. March beans ended February $1.14 1/2 higher than the last trading day of January, while the November contract ended 87 1/2 cents higher. The high-range finish for the month bodes well for market bulls near-term, especially since March beans today posted their third straight close above the October high of $12.90 yesterday.

Wheat: 2 to 4 cents lower. Wheat saw spillover from neighboring pits overnight. March Chicago wheat futures ended February 1 3/4 cents lower than the last trading day of January, while the September contract ended 7 1/2 cents lower. This is revealing of the wheat market's fundamentals, which aren't as strong as neighboring corn and soybean markets given plentiful global stocks.

Live cattle: Mixed. Futures are expected to be mixed today following yesterday's sharp gains, as traders reevaluate positions to start the month and wait on cash trade to begin. Meanwhile, the beef market continues to strengthen, with Choice values posting a new record again yesterday at $198.80. Futures April live cattle futures ended February $1.17 1/2 higher than the last trading day of January.

Lean Hogs: Mixed. Futures are called mixed following yesterday's gains, as traders remain concerned about the product market. Pork cutout values slipped 75 cents yesterday, but movement has improved this week. But with packers' profit margins in the red, cash bids are expected to be steady to weaker this morning. To end February, April lean hog futures posted a high-range finished 55 cents higher than the last trading day of January.


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